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Heat, light and water - energy-efficient solutions help to save recourses!

On the 3rd of March in the Pushkin town - St. Petersburg suburb - a Friends of the Baltic non-profit organization held training for simple and inexpensive solutions that will help schools to save water, heat and light. The seminar was held at the Pushkin Palace of Children's Creativity and gathered more than 45 directors, teachers, trainers and housekeepers of educational institutions from different parts of the city.

Thermal insulation of windows, reflectors for heating radiators, fuel-efficient nozzles on the taps, energy-efficient lighting and other devices, as well as cost-effective modes of energy and resources use will help not only to implement the recommendations on energy efficiency, developed by the regional energy auditors, but also to find additional reserves to save energy and money.

In 2013-2014 Finnish-Russian project "Step to Ecosupport" was carried out in St. Petersburg. In this project Friends of the Baltic NGO helped employees from educational institutions to acquire knowledge about the easiest ways to save energy and resources. But most important task was to involve colleagues and the administration to supporting environmentally friendly solutions and sustainable management. Ecosupporters promote environmentally friendly management – it is specially trained active staff representative with Ecosupport certificate.

Information about the project spread throughout the city and even beyond. Even after the project end Friends of the Baltic continues to receive requests from new enthusiasts who want to become Ecosupporters. Environmental training in Pushkin on energy efficiency in educational institutions was held as a response to the such kind of request.

In St. Petersburg you can meet a lot of old buildings that have not seen a major overhaul. Heat is actively coming out through the windows and doors. Temperature near the window and in the middle of the room, where the meeting was held, differed by 2 degrees. The obvious solution here is insulation. One of the cheapest and easiest ways is windows insulation by the “Swedish” method. In the wooden window frame you cut groove and put rubber sealant, which prevents the heat coming out of the room. Learn more about how you can do it with your hands HERE

Heating is a big part of the budget. It should be warm in the room - but how to make heating cost-effective? There is a simple solution - a reflective layer behind the radiator. This insulation material (izofol, penofol, folgoplast ...), which can be placed behind the radiator and the heat will not go out through the building wall, but reflected into the room. The price of such material is only 35 rubles per m2. Training participants tried to install a screen with their hands. It took only 10 minutes. After installing, temperature rose to 1.5 degrees (meter from the wall).

The electricity consumption for lighting can reach 30% of the total electricity consumption in the building. And if it’s so large, you should start saving electricity with lighting. You can apply different methods: install LED bulbs, paint a walls with white color (or use white wallpaper) instead of dark ones, use infra-red sensors for lighting, turn off electrical appliances from the network when they are not needed, avoid stand-by regime, etc.

But the energy saving should not decrease our comfort. Lighting is an important factor for productive and effective learning process. Visually we get 80% of the information. Seminar participants themselves tried to measure whether there is enough lighting in classrooms of PCC Pushkin using illuminometer. Lighting in the offices and in regular classes considered satisfactory when there is 300 lux on the workplace, and in areas where children or employees engaged in special activities requiring eyestrain (drawing, painting, etc) - 500 lux at the workplace.

In almost all classes illuminometer. showed more than 500 lux, this is due to sufficient natural light, because there are extra-large windows in the building. But in the same classes lighting in the back row was less than 200 lux, even when the artificial light was on. Teachers proposed to change the location of the desks and establish lower lamps, always with energy-efficient bulbs (LED is the best option).

Saving water should be the primarily thing, because there is a limited supply of fresh water (1% of the world reserves), as well as the high cost of energy for water heating, transportation (to the consumer, i.e. in our tap), disposal and treatment. Water use reduction - is important task to reduce the load on the environment and energy conservation.

The biggest loss of water occurs when washing dishes, while taking a shower or bath. One of the simplest solutions to this situation may become aerator - he fills the stream of water with bubbles. This makes it possible to save up to 60% of water. The cost of such devices starts from 35 rubles. Training participants tried to compare how much water will pour from the tap without aerator and with him. The difference was significant. One of the teams without aerator for 10 seconds at the highest pressure resulted 1850 ml, and with aerator only 1000 ml. I.e. at the same water pressure you can save almost half.

As part of the All-Russian campaign "Energy efficiency is the biggest power plant in Russia" Friends of the Baltic continues to tell citizens about simple energy solutions that will not only save ruble in the wallet, but also reduce the load on the environment.

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